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Coming Home: A Practical and Compassionate Guide to Caring for a Dying Loved One

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  • Posted June 11, 2011

    Readable for anyone! More than a book on death and dying - it's a book about life.

    Although I didn't have anyone close to me working on the dying process, I read Deborah's book because I knew she has had a very interesting life. Her book's content is beyond the scope of its main objective. Written in an easy friendly style, Deborah shares her vast and interesting life experiences that brought her to her inspiration to write this book. For example her experience of working for the U.S. Foreign Service, then living in a small village in Nepal when she had a dream encouraging her to contact Mother Teresa, which she did. I recommended it for anyone.

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  • Posted December 25, 2010

    Empathic Approach to Caring for the Terminally Ill at Home

    This book is a synthesis of Duda's psychological and spiritual understandings and the basic information on physical care needed to support someone who lives at home during the terminal stages of his or her life. It includes things to keep in mind when a loved one is deciding where to die, and, if home is the choice, what you can do about family morale, pacing yourself, pain relief, interacting with doctors, giving injections, and taking care of your feelings, as well as a multitude of other relevant topics. Although the book is directed principally to the family and friends of the dying person, much of it can be shared with the dying person as well. This book is about acknowledging our fears about dying and, at the same time, moving through them toward greater love, joy, and freedom as we experience dying. As Duda writes, "The book originated after I met Mother Teresa in Calcutta when I was very afraid of death. I expected dying and death to be horrible experiences and found them instead to be profoundly healing and uplifting." Starting with sharing her four experiences with two very close friends and both her parents dying at home, Duda then discusses the advantages of dying at home, followed by when it is not appropriate to die at home. She bears financial considerations in mind when describing the various factors that impact on making the decision. Among sources of help, Duda covers family and friends, medical, home care and legal help, medical suppliers, counseling services, and spiritual and emergency support. Attention is also paid to both sharing the process of dying with healthy children, and how to cope with the dying child. Illustrated with clear line drawings, Coming Home also lists useful resources, how to write your child's story, a helpful bibliography, and a number of notes. Duda's sensitive and caring approach to the subject of dying, based on her own real-life experiences, is evident throughout Coming Home. As well as being medically sound, the work is profound and spiritually uplifting. The emotional aspects of dying are just as important to her, if not more so, than are the material aspects. Both she handles with great skill. This is a perfect volume for anyone who is involved with the dying process of a relative or friend at home, as well as a useful work for any nurse or companion involved in the field.

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